Four people survived a month in the Pacific after eating coconuts and drinking rainwater from an ordeal that killed eight of their companions, including a baby, on Wednesday.
The group from the province of Bougainville in Papua New Guinea is said to have spent 32 days at sea.
The Solomon Star News reported that the group left Bougainville on December 22nd to celebrate Christmas in the Carteret Islands, about 100 kilometers away.
But survivor Dominic Stally said her small boat capsized and some of the group drowned.
The rest of them managed to get the ship in order, but there were more deaths as they hovered in the remote waters and were exposed to the strong ocean currents.
"We can't do anything with their bodies, we just have to let them go at sea," he told the newspaper.
"A couple died and left their baby behind and I'm the one who held the baby and later the baby died too."
Stally said a number of fishing vessels had passed nearby without noticing them until they were finally picked up off New Caledonia on January 23, after traveling about 2,000 kilometers.
The Star News reported that the survivors consisted of two men, a woman and a girl around the age of 12.
They were dropped off last Saturday in Honiara, the capital of the Solomon Islands, and released after treatment for dehydration into the care of the High Commissioner of Papua New Guinea, John Balavu.
The High Commissioner and the doctors at the Honiara Hospital were not immediately available to comment.
Epic survival stories are not uncommon in the Pacific, where tiny islands are separated by vast expanses of the ocean.
Salvadoran fisherman Jose Alvarenga washed in the marshalls in January 2014, more than 13 months after leaving the west coast of Mexico with a companion who died during the trip.
He survived by eating raw fish and bird meat while remaining damp with rainwater, turtle blood, and his own urine.
His remarkable performance was initially viewed with skepticism, but he passed a polygraph test and an investigation of ocean currents and boat records supported his claim.
An Indonesian teen survived seven weeks at sea in 2018 after his tiny fishing trap lost its berth and landed approximately 2,500 kilometers from Guam.
(Except for the headline, this story was not edited by NDTV staff and comes from a syndicated feed.)